I’ve been all about the bamboo coaster crafts lately! It’s easy to turn a little container like this:
Into a cute hamper like this:
Or you can turn a small plastic container you no longer need, like this one:
into something much cuter, like this:
Let me walk you through the steps. Start with some small, sturdy containers. You’ll also need bamboo coasters like these:
Let’s start with the smaller container. This is a travel-sized container that I used for sunscreen at some point. I’m going to call this a hatbox, since that’s kind of how it ended up looking.
I started by creating the top of the container. I used a mesh-backed coaster for this part of the project because I wanted bamboo that would stay together well even after I cut it out.
Trace your cap and cut out your circle, and, when you’re happy with it, glue it to the top of your container.
I often get asked what kind of glue I use. For most projects, I use Elmer’s Glue-All multi-purpose glue. For projects involving paper (for instance, when I put up wallpaper in a dollhouse) I usually use Craft-Bond (aka rubber cement).
For the sides of the container, I used coasters without mesh backing because I wanted the bamboo to be as flexible as possible since it needed to wrap around a small, round container.
If your glue beads up, spread it around before applying your strips of bamboo siding. Otherwise it will seep out and you’ll have an unattractive mess!
If one coaster isn’t big enough to fit around your container, that’s okay. Focus on getting one piece in place properly. Hold it in place for a couple of minutes until it starts to set. Then add your remaining piece, readjust as needed, and use a rubber band or other materials to hold your container together while it dries thoroughly.
Isn’t that cute?
The best part of all is that it’s still a functioning container. Tiny treasures can be stored inside. For a container like this, you’re probably best off having the lid on but not **quite** closed while it’s drying. That way you won’t risk accidentally gluing it shut (if it’s closed tightly) or having the glue dry in a bulky way that makes it so it won’t close (if you have the base and lid drying as two separate parts).
Now let’s look at I how I made the little hamper.
This is a cardboard container that a little bottle of essential oils came in.
Ooh! What’s that inside?
That corrugated cardboard isn’t needed for this project, but I’ll save it for some future project.
I tried wrapping a coaster around the container. Would you believe it?? It’s a perfect fit!
I cut the coaster so that I had the correct portion for the top and the correct portion for the bottom, and then I simply glued each in place, following the same basic plan as with the previous hatbox project. Instead of using a random strip of coaster for the cap and another for the base, if you can use one piece and cut it, so it fits back together like a puzzle later, you’ll have a nice end product. No matter how neatly you cut your coasters, there may be slight nuances and when you put your cap on, you want it to look like a perfect fit.
Base in place! (That’s my little hatbox, not the hamper lid, right behind it.) As you can see above, my coaster extended beyond the bottom of the container. Since it was already so tall, I cut off the excess. If I was going to use this for a different scale project (for instance, a hamper in a Barbie doll house), I would have left it as it was.
This lid is cute, but I didn’t really want a bit of ribbon as my hamper handle, so I removed it.
These piece of a necklace is going to be my hamper handle instead.
Here’s a look at my hamper when it was just about done. Just waiting on that handle.
Once again, I used the mesh-backed coaster for the lid and the non-mesh-backed coaster for the sides. This container was basically designed to have some bamboo popped onto the top of it. It fit perfectly in the cardboard circle that was already part of the container’s design!
Back to that handle…
Since there was already a little hole in the lid from where I removed the ribbon handle, attaching it was really simple.
I just sewed it into place.
Here are some looks at the finished hamper:
Next up, faux tiki lights! This project was REALLY fast and easy. I just wrapped some coaster bits around some caps, added string, and had fun little lights.
Here’s a room using all of these bamboo projects along with the planters previously seen and some other fun, easy projects, like bamboo coaster blinds, table runners, and place mats.
All photos by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.